Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Michelle Obama: Sesame Street's Big Bird and Elmo to Promote Fresh Fruit and Veggies to Kids

Food
Michelle Obama: Sesame Street's Big Bird and Elmo to Promote Fresh Fruit and Veggies to Kids

The nonprofit organization behind the popular children’s educational program Sesame Street will allow the produce industry to use Big Bird, Elmo and Sesame Street’s other characters free of charge to help market fruits and vegetables to kids.

The goal is to level the marketing playing field to give fresh fruits and vegetables a competitive edge over processed foods and, ultimately, encourage healthier eating habits among children.

The agreement aims to help kids develop healthier eating habits early in life by choosing fresh fruits and veggies. Photo credit: National Nursing Review

The Sesame Street characters may appear on produce in stores as early as mid-2014.

Sesame Workshop and the Produce Marketing Association (PMA) joined the Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA) in the two-year agreement, which was announced by First Lady Michelle Obama at a press conference late today.

“Just imagine what will happen when we take our kids to the grocery store, and they see Elmo and Rosita and the other Sesame Street Muppets they love up and down the produce aisle,” First Lady Michelle Obama said at a press conference today. “Imagine what it will be like to have our kids begging us to buy them fruits and vegetables instead of cookies, candy and chips."

In her remarks, the First Lady cited a recent study published in Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine conducted by researchers at Cornell University. Researchers gave kids a choice between eating an apple, a cookie or both and the vast majority of the kids chose the cookie. But when the researchers put Elmo stickers on the apples and let the kids choose again, nearly double the number of kids went for the apple.

“It’s no secret that many parents have a hard time getting kids excited about eating their fruits and vegetables,” said PHA CEO Lawrence A. Soler. “Today’s commitment helps all of us promote increased fruit and vegetable consumption, and gives parents and families a powerful, positive tool to help kids get excited about eating healthier foods.”

As part of the agreement, Sesame Workshop will create a produce promotion toolkit and style guide for use of the Sesame Workshop assets in promotional activities.

“Sesame Workshop has long been committed to the health and well-being of children through our longstanding Healthy Habits for Life initiative—since 2004, we have been integrating messages about healthy food choices and exercise into Sesame Street, the television program, in our community outreach and on our other off-air activities,” said H. Melvin Ming, president and CEO of Sesame Workshop. “We are proud to work with the Produce Marketing Association and Partnership for a Healthier America to continue this important work.”

Reindeers at their winter location in northern Sweden on Feb. 4, 2020, near Ornskoldsvik. JONATHAN NACKSTRAND / AFP via Getty Images

Sweden's reindeer have a problem. In winter, they feed on lichens buried beneath the snow. But the climate crisis is making this difficult. Warmer temperatures mean moisture sometimes falls as rain instead of snow. When the air refreezes, a layer of ice forms between the reindeer and their meal, forcing them to wander further in search of ideal conditions. And sometimes, this means crossing busy roads.

Read More Show Less

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

The Great Lakes, including Lake Michigan, experienced some of their warmest temperatures on record in the summer of 2020. Ken Ilio / Moment / Getty Images

Heatwaves are not just distinct to the land. A recent study found lakes are susceptible to temperature rise too, causing "lake heatwaves," The Independent reported.

Read More Show Less

Trending

Starfish might appear simple creatures, but the way these animals' distinctive biology evolved was, until recently, unknown. FangXiaNuo / Getty Images

By Aaron W Hunter

A chance discovery of a beautifully preserved fossil in the desert landscape of Morocco has solved one of the great mysteries of biology and paleontology: how starfish evolved their arms.

Read More Show Less
U.S. President Joe Biden sits in the Oval Office as he signs a series of orders at the White House in Washington, D.C. on January 20, 2021. Jim Watson / AFP / Getty Images

President Joe Biden officially took office Wednesday, and immediately set to work reversing some of former President Donald Trump's environmental policies.

Read More Show Less
Erik McGregor / LightRocket / Getty Images

In many schools, the study of climate change is limited to the science. But at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, students in one class also learn how to take climate action.

Read More Show Less